RAMALLAH: United States (US) forensic experts returned the bullet that killed Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh to Palestinian authorities after examining it, the Palestinian justice minister said Sunday.
Upon Washington’s request, the bullet that killed the journalist in the occupied West Bank in May was handed over to the experts for investigation, Mohammed al-Shalaldeh told Anadolu Agency.
“After the bullet was returned, it was also examined by us,” he said, adding no new conclusions were reached over it.
Noting that there was no information regarding the allegations that Israelis also participated in the investigations, he said they adhered to official procedures with the US and delivered the bullet based on ethical and legal grounds.
“The important thing is to catch and bring to account the person who committed this murder,” he said, adding the US is expected not only to care about the investigation but also to pursue whoever committed the killing as Abu Akleh was a US citizen.
Noting that the results of the US investigation did not reach them, he said they were determined about the investigation.
An Israeli military spokesman told Army Radio earlier Sunday that Israeli experts would examine the bullet with the Americans.
On Saturday, the Palestinian Authority said it had handed the bullet that killed Abu Akleh to US officials to conduct a forensic examination.
On May 11, Abu Akleh, 51, was covering an Israeli military raid near the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank when she was shot dead.
While Palestinian officials and her employer Al Jazeera accused Israel of killing the reporter, Tel Aviv denied any responsibility.
Palestinian officials have rejected an Israeli request for conducting a joint investigation into the journalist’s death.
On May 26, Palestinian Attorney-General Akram al-Khatib announced that an examination of Abu Akleh’s body confirmed that she was killed by an armor-piercing projectile fired directly at her head by an Israeli sniper.
Several leading media agencies including Al Jazeera, CNN, the Associated Press, The Washington Post and The New York Times conducted investigations which all came to the conclusion that Abu Akleh was killed by an Israeli bullet.-Bernama